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The Hindu Newspaper Analysis 7 August 2023

The Hindu Newspaper Analysis for UPSC

The Hindu Newspaper Analysis 5 August 2023

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday virtually laid the foundation stone for the redevelopment of 508 railway stations across the country at a cost of over ₹24,470 crore.
  • The 508 stations are spread across 27 States and Union Territories — 55 each in Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan (at a cost of ₹4,000 crore), 49 in Bihar, 44 in Maharashtra (₹1,500 crore), 37 in West Bengal, 34 in Madhya Pradesh (₹1,000 crore), 32 in Assam, 25 in Odisha, 22 in Punjab, 21 each in Gujarat and Telangana, 20 in Jharkhand, 18 each in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, 15 in Haryana, 13 in Karnataka and others.
  • Modi said the work was part of the Amrit Bharat Station Scheme, under which 1,300 prime railway stations in the country would be redeveloped.
  • Amrit Bharat Station Scheme

 The Hindu Editorial Today

About:

  • The scheme envisages the development of stations on a continuous basis with a long-term vision.

Aim:

  • The scheme aims at preparation of Master Plans of the Railway stations and implementation of the Master Plan in phases to enhance the facilities.
  • Key features for these proposed stations:
  • provisions for roof top plazas,
  • longer platforms,
  • ballastless tracks,
  • and 5G connectivity.

  • In staying the conviction of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi in a case in which he was found guilty of defaming all those who have ‘Modi’ as their surname, the Supreme Court of India has restored his membership of the Lok Sabha.
  • The Court has obviously seen that the quantum of sentence was the same as the prison term that is required to get someone disqualified as a legislator, as well as from contesting elections for six years after completing the term.
  • Article 102: It specifies that a person shall be disqualified for contesting elections and being a Member of Parliament under certain conditions.
  • These include:
  • holding an office of profit
  • being of unsound mind or insolvent
  • not being a citizen of India.
  • It also authorizes Parliament to make law determining conditions of disqualifications.
  • The Representation of the People Act, 1951: It provides that a person will be disqualified if convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for two years or more.
  • The person is disqualified for the period of imprisonment and a further six years.
  • exception for sitting members
  • they have been provided a period of three months from the date of conviction to appeal
  • The disqualification will not be applicable until the appeal is decided.

  • After months of wrangling over language on Ukraine, G-20 negotiators are now worried about reaching a consensus over climate change issues ahead of the leaders’ summit in September.
  • The concerns have grown after two G-20 ministerial meetings on energy transitions, environment and climate in July ended without joint language on a number of key issues, including emissions targets, cutting down on fossil fuels, and climate finance.

  • Another contentious issue was the lack of funding promised by developed countries, including the U.S. and Australia, which had committed to providing $100 billion per year, beginning 2020.
  • The G20 or Group of Twenty is an intergovernmental forum comprising 19 countries and the European Union (EU)
  • The G20 was founded in 1999 in response to several world economic crises
  • Since 2008, it has convened at least once a year, with summits involving each member’s head of government or state, finance minister, foreign minister, and other high-ranking officials; the EU is represented by the European Commission and the European Central Bank

  • India’s retail inflation may have spiked close to or over the 6% upper tolerance threshold of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in July, owing to a broad-based uptick in food prices, and could remain sticky in coming months, economists reckon.
  • This could compel the central bank to stay hawkish and possibly raise its inflation projections for the ongoing July-to-September quarter (Q2) as well as the full year 2023-24 at its monetary policy review this week, and delay hopes of an interest rate cut.

  • A recent publication by the Zoological Survey of India (ZSI) points out that about 5% of the birds found in the country are endemic and not reported in other parts of the world. The publication, 75 Endemic Birds of India, was recently released on the 108th foundation day of the ZSI.
  • India is home to 1,353 bird species, which represents approximately 12.4% of the global bird diversity. Of these, 78 (5%) are endemic to the country.
  • Amitava Majumder, one of the authors of the publication, said three of the 78 species have not been recorded in the past few decades.
  • They are the Manipur bush quail (Perdicula manipurensis), listed as “endangered” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species with its last recorded sighting in 1907; the Himalayan quail (Ophrysia superciliosa), listed as “critically endangered” with its last recorded sighting in 1876; and the Jerdon’s courser (Rhinoptilus bitorquatus), listed as “critically endangered” with its last confirmed sighting in 2009.
  • The highest number of endemic species have been recorded in the Western Ghats, with 28 bird species.
  • Zoological Survey of India
  • The Zoological Survey of India (ZSI), a subordinate organization of the Ministry of Environment and Forests was established in 1916.
  • It is a national centre for faunistic survey and exploration of the resources leading to the advancement of knowledge on the exceptionally rich faunal diversity of the country.
  • It has its headquarters at Kolkata and 16 regional stations located in different geographic locations of the country.

  • India became the world’s top sugar producer in 2021-2022, surpassing Brazil, but the extensive use of resources in sugar production is depleting rapidly, leading to a potential crisis in the future.
  • Over-cultivation of sugarcane has caused a sugar surplus and high exports, impacting groundwater negatively. To prevent the risk of agricultural collapse, addressing groundwater overuse in the sugar industry is crucial.
  • The Central government offers a fair and remunerative price (FRP) scheme, which mandates a minimum price that sugar mills have to pay to sugarcane farmers, ensuring that farmers always get fair profits for their crop.
  • State governments also offer heavy subsidies to incentivise sugarcane cultivation. Some have argued that this is done to win farmers’ votes in politically important rural areas. The resulting sugar surplus has led to higher exports, with a record of 110 lakh tonnes exported in 2021-2022.
  • To deal with the sugar surplus, the Indian government considered diverting it to the production of ethanol, an organic compound made by fermenting sugarcane molasses or sugar.
  • 100 kg of sugar needs two lakh litres of groundwater for irrigation, raising concerns as these States are already drought-prone and groundwater-stressed, as per a 2022 CGWB report.
  • A better and more sustainable way would be to assess and then correct incentives that skew in favour of sugarcane over other crops, leading to a consistent surplus.

  • On August 1, Meta announced it will block news content on its Facebook and Instagram platforms in Canada following the enactment of Canada’s Online News Act on July 22.
  • The Online News Act requires digital platforms with strategic market dominance, like Google and Meta, to negotiate fairly with Canadian news businesses for the use of their content.
  • Google and Meta will be required to enter compensation agreements with authorised news publishers in Canada under government oversight, with a minimum contribution based on their revenue in the country.
  • In 2021, Australia passed the News Media and Digital Platforms Mandatory Bargaining Code, which became the blueprint for Canadian law and similar laws are being considered in Europe and many other countries.
  • This legislative activity is a reaction to the “asymmetric interdependence” that has developed between a few large digital platforms and news publishers. The news publishers heavily rely on these platforms to send readers to their content, and as a result, generate revenue.
  • National Commission for Protection of Child Rights:
  • The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) is a statutory body established under the Commission for Protection of Child Rights (CPCR) Act, 2005.
  • It is under the administrative control of the Ministry of Women and Child Development.
  • Under the act, a Child is defined as a person in the 0 to 18 years age group.
  • It aims to ensure that all Laws, Policies, Programmes, and Administrative Mechanisms are in harmony with the Child Rights perspective as enshrined in the Constitution of India and also the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
  • Composition: This commission has a chairperson and six members of which at least two should be women.
  • All of them are appointed by the Central Government for 3 years.
  • The maximum age to serve in the commission is 65 years for Chairman and 60 years for members.

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